NRKs and their relatives in the State have experienced both the positive and negative influences of issue caused by migration to other parts of the world. This has peaked up during the last three decades.
Thousands of Keralalites work at foreign countries. They return home on expiry or termination of their contracts. Each of them has many dependents in home land. In view of huge number of work-force, there are equally large numbers of labour & death related problems. Since there are a good number of “women workers”, they too face several job related problems. The plight of many NRK workers is pitiable once they lose their jobs, as they have several family members who depend on them. Low-income job seekers from Kerala who look for greener pastures at abroad sometimes face a host of problems. They are unable to tackle theses problems on their own. The lack of a single agency under the Government of Kerala which the NRKs can contact for redressal of their grievances had been causing hindrance in NRK welfare activities and also in close interaction.
In this circumstance, the social security of the Non-Resident Keralites and their families is of major concern. Realizing this Government of Kerala has launched on 6th December 1996 the department of Non-resident Keralites’ Affairs (NORKA) to redress the grievances of Non-resident Keralites. NORKA is the first of its kind formed in an Indian state. It is an agency to fulfill an assurance given by the Government of Kerala to its expatriate community. It aims at the strengthening of relation between the NRKs and the Government of Kerala and it is the culmination of efforts for finding out solution to problems faced by NRK community. It is also an attempt at institutionalizing the administrative framework.
NORKA makes efforts to solve the grievances raised in petitions for remedial action on threats to the lives and property of those who are left at home, tracing of missing persons abroad, compensation from sponsors, harassment from sponsors, cheating by recruiting agents, educational facilities for children of NRKs, introduction of more flights, etc. It provides assistance to stranded Keralites through follow up action initiated on all the petitions. The authorities of State Government/Government of India are being directed to take immediate suitable action on them.
The NORKA has so far received nearly 70,000 representations/petitions from Non Resident Keralites. These petitions were for remedial action on threats to the lives and property of those who are left at home, for power and gas connection, tracing of missing persons abroad, compensation from sponsors, harassment from sponsors, cheating by recruiting agents, education facilities for children of NRKs, introduction of more flights, etc. Follow up action was initiated on all the petitions and replies were given, and the authorities of State Government/Government of India were directed to take immediate suitable action on them.
NORKA has established NORKA Roots that acts as a counsel for the non-resident keralites. NORKA has established an agency-the Non-Resident Keralites Welfare Agency-to implement schemes for the welfare and benefit of NRKs, to channelise their expertise and resources. As an agency, it is expected that more activities in all spheres connected with NRKs can be taken up.